Wa `alaykum as-salamu wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh.
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
In this fatwa:
1- Bringing children to mosques is not only allowed but also advisable in Islam on the condition that they do not cause disturbance or distraction to the worshippers.
2- The community, in cooperation with the imam, should provide proper facilities for kids taking into consideration the importance of endearing mosques to children.
Responding to your question, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and an Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:
Having said this, I should also point out that mosques are not allowed to bar the children. We should rather encourage them to frequently join mosques as long as the parents make sure they do not cause any disturbance or distractions for those who pray.
During the Prophet’s time, occasionally, parents brought their children to the mosque during the hours of the regular prayers, and hence occasionally the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) would cut short his prayers if he would hear an infant’s cry because of his pity for the mother and the baby.
Based on this, some scholars are of the view there is nothing wrong in bringing the children to the regular prayers as long as they are not a constant source of distraction.
However, this does not mean that they should be bringing children to the mosque for night prayers such as taraweeh or qiyam where imams are supposed to be reading long Surahs and they are supposed to finish their fixed portions of the Quran each night in order to complete the entire Quran during the month.
Bringing children to mosques at these irregular hours would, therefore, be a source of distraction for the imam as well as his followers. Moreover, it would also amount to abusing the children as they are supposed to be in bed at the time.
Therefore, it is advisable for the parents not to bring the children to the mosque at such odd hours, while they may do so at other times.
Allah Almighty knows best.
Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.